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Local social justice group wants Lawrence Revell to step away from chief position

Posted at 6:23 PM, Dec 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-30 18:23:01-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — George Williams didn't get the justice he deserved.

That's the message from a social justice group in Tallahassee calling for Lawrence Revell to step away from the chief position.

Revell shot and killed the black teenager 23 years ago. Despite being cleared by a grand jury, for his family and some people in Tallahassee, that was not enough.

The Tallahassee Community Action Committee called out not only Lawrence Revell, but the City Manager's Office that put him in place.

From friends of George Williams' family to activists.

"It's opening up the wounds again. It's a smack in the face," said Trish Brown with the Tallahassee Community Action Committee.

There is a call for justice in the 1996 shooting death of the black teenager.

Incoming Chief Lawrence Revell shot and killed Williams after police say Williams hit Revell's partner with his car.

While a grand jury cleared Revell of any wrongdoing, the Tallahassee Community Action Committee and Williams' family says that was not enough.

"It's a nightmare for them that there is no closure to this," said Brown.

Donald Towe came to the rally with a different message. His dad was a homicide investigator for the Tallahassee Police Department.

Towe says his father was also in a shooting of a black man. He says from his own experience, it's really Revell's family that's suffering now.

"Our family had to go into hiding. It was an officer-involved shooting in Tallahassee. It has a major impact on the family," said Towe.

He says while what happened to Williams is unfortunate, the group is going about change in the wrong way.

"So much emphasis is being put on the Williams family but they also need to be aware of the impact it has on the extended Revell family," said Towe. "Here you have all these titles and name-calling on Mr. Revell, how's the impact on the rest of the family."

Despite those concerns, TCAC members say they won't stop until they get what they believe is justice.

"We need to create a system that holds people accountable for their actions. The only way is community control of the police," said Denzel Pierre.

We also talked to the city about their thoughts with TCAC's demands.

City manager Reese Goad says he is not changing his mind and plans to honor the agreement with Revell.